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database statistics measurements

Note that if your tables are constantly hammered by INSERTUPDATE, and DELETE, you should be careful when indexing—you could end up decreasing performance as all indexes need to be modified after these operations.

Further, DBAs often drop their SQL indexes before performing batch inserts of million-plus rows to speed up the insertion process. After the batch is inserted, they then recreate the indexes. Remember, however, that dropping indexes will affect every query running in that table; so this approach is only recommended when working with a single, large insertion.

SQL Tuning: Execution Plans in SQL Server

By the way: the Execution Plan tool in SQL Server can be useful for creating indexes.

Its main function is to graphically display the data retrieval methods chosen by the SQL Server query optimizer. If you’ve never seen them before, there’s a detailed walkthrough.

To retrieve the execution plan (in SQL Server Management Studio), just click “Include Actual Execution Plan” (CTRL + M) before running your query.

Afterwards, a third tab named “Execution Plan” will appear. You might see a detected missing index. To create it, just right click in the execution plan and choose the “Missing Index Details…”. It’s as simple as that!

This screenshot demonstrates one of the performance tuning techniques for your SQL database.